Free Tribal Belly Dance Bra Making Workshop! Sunday 18th September in Repton

Free Tribal Bra Making workshop!

Sunday 18th 2- 4:30pm

My Place! Repton ph 66554896 or email if you need directions.

Sew much fun to be had – LOL! See below for inspiration and information on what to look for in a bra base.

An event for belly dancers and non belly dancers alike (women only though!!).

Skilled sewers that want to join in a share their wisdom or just work on a project with a lovely group of ladies are welcome to join us. If you have tribal do-dads you want to sell or bits and pieces you want to give away to a good home (ie broken jewelery, single earrings, tassels, bits of trim or pretty fabric scraps) bring those along too, its an awesome way to recycle! We can all help each other create unique masterpieces !!

Jade Belly Dance beach bellydancers near Coffs Harbour

Inspiration for decorating a Bra for Tribal Style Belly Dance

OK, the last post was on what you needed to make a tribal belly dance bra and about my upcoming workshop where I will be presenting general tips on ‘how- to’ . Plus I will present info on how to enhance the area for smaller chested ladies and my colleague Ashwara will be talking on issues to consider in design for bustier lasses and give individual advice. But regardless of whether or not you can make the workshop here – I am presenting a collection of photos I have gathered from various sources to help inspire you in your creations.

Left for instance is a red toned fabric tribal belly dance bra. A design like this has nice clean lines and lets the lovely fabric trim create the interest. It would suit a smaller busted lady or a young  pert lady with a slim stomach. I say this because drooping and long fringing like this can look terrible on a lady with large breasts. I have unfortunately seen very enthusiastically created bras on older ladies where the fringing creates the illusion that their breasts could be tucked into their hip belts!!! I will spare you the pics! Right shows a bra that is an example of too much fringe. The bra itself is not too bad. Its horizontal type lines add width which is great for smaller chested or pear shaped ladies. The fringe adds nothing and reminds me of someone with a serious body hair problem. If you want to hide your stomach you are usually better served using an underbust leotard (available online). They come in various colours including flesh toned and can be worn with a bra.Tribal belly dance bra circle chest

Left is a different style of top. They have used decorative metal circle shaped cups. I can see how some people would like this, but for me it looks a bit silly and makes me want to draw a smiley mouth under the belly button to go with the strange googly eyes. I would recommend experimenting with this look only after you have made and danced in a few bras.  Below is another attractive bra, the comments I made for the first apply here too. The shell bra Tribal belly dance bra beige tassels shell bra Tribal belly dance bra beige depicted shows a lovely simple design easily constructed by even beginner sewers. The style would look attractive on a number of physiques and would therefore be a good choice for troupe costuming, particularly for summer time performances as the shells are reminiscent of the bra Tribal belly dance bra black

Left shows another shell bra that is simple but effective in design. The clever use of pattern saves on materials and time.metal fringe bra Tribal belly dance bra blue On the topic of simple designs the blue bra on the right is simple in its aesthetics but effective. this design would look lovely on a lot of bodies but would be a good choice for busty girls as its attractive but doesn’t look saggy. The metal fringe could be a little troublesome for those wearing a body stocking though so probably only a good choice if you intend to show off your skin or wear a thick tightly woven tummy cover. Picking an attractive embroidered fabric is an easy way to add interest. Think outside the box when trying to find something different. I have used panels off damaged bags for instance.ultimate metalbra metal fringe bra Tribal belly dance bra black and silver

The next bra my friends and I have dubbed the “Iron man” bra. If you want to attempt this kind of design you will need to start with a very, very sturdy bra base and it will be heavy! You will also need to spend some money on finding the tribal type accessories. You may find it cheaper to buy one of these off a vendor if you can find one in your size. It is tedious sewing on so many bits and pieces ( I will give tips on how to speed up the process in my workshop). Ways to cut down cost are to use things like broken anklets. Also consider some cheap Indian jewelery to add as it will make it lighter. Probably best for medium sized ladies as it will need a bit of flesh to help hold it up but may look a little low hanging for pendulous breasts. Metal fringe comments apply here too. If you like wearing gauntlets or dangly bangles you may need to change the style as it will probably catch on your arms.special coin bra ultimate metal bra  bra Tribal belly dance bra black and silver Also consider avoiding the usual halter neck with this kind of heavy design. IT will stress your neck. A cross over strap would work better.

On the right is a simple coin bra. It uses coins that don’t have fixing soldered on. It gives a rounder appearance which is attractive but can look a little bit like you have sewn on all your 5 cent pieces! If you like this you can go to a coin dealer and buy a lot of foreign coins and drill holes in them. (It is illegal to do so with Australian coins for example but in Australia I don’t think any authority will care if its someone else s currency)mix amulets drape special coin bra ultimate metal bra  bra Tribal belly dance bra bl. Right again shows a gold toned example. It uses what is known as amulets (word to drop when you are shopping). The drape on this bra is very attractive to most bodies too.mix amulets drape special coin bra ultimate metal bra  bra Tribal belly dance bra bl

The red bra to the left is a different shape. I think this is quite flattering and as it covers more flesh it can be a good choice for a modest dancer. Watch out for how your design looks in profile however. This design may not look the greatest side on. The next pic is of the lovely Jill Parker. She is doing the naughty thing of mixing golds and silvers in her costume yet it is totally working! All the suggestions I am making are general guidelines. Feel free to break all the rules in your designs but I recommend you stick to them for the first effort so you

coin costume  special coin bra metal bra  bra Tribal belly dance bra gold

have something that will work nicely. Jill looks to be wearing a metal bra over the top of an ordinary bra. This is an easy option. There are lovely Indian and Egyptian designs of metal tops that you wear over bras. It means you can change the under colour easily too and being generally monochromatic (in either silver or gold) they go with everything. Please wear a bra under though… otherwise pinched nipples – ouch! Would suit a longer torso with all this heavycoin costume  special coin bra metal bra  bra Tribal belly dance bra green,additional under bra decoration. Next up is an inspired design, I love it. The green is a lovely touch around the edges. The colours are lovely and the diagonal stripes would be flattering on many but particularly busty girls. nice work whomever is responsible!! Following that is this one that has used a lot of beads by the look of things. I like the effect but it wocoin costume  special coin bra metal bra  bra Tribal belly dance bra brown

uld be labour intensive fora beginner. It also doesn’t add a lot to your profile so keep that in mind.

Right is a colourful bra in a common style. As you can see you don’t even need to cover the whole bra for it to be effective. Of course you need to make sure the visible bit is attractive first! What sets it apart is the amazing drapes. These could be lovely but not good if you intend to veil dance in it!

Left is a simple but effective idea using assuit as the base and adding but a few simple highlights. Assuit is a mesh that has metal pieces hammered into it in a pattern. It is what people used for bling before sequins!! It is expensive and hard to come by but wonderful! There are some good fakes around if you can’t get the real deal.

Finally I will end with this white delight. Hopefully this has given you some ideas. Good luck !!!

PS most of the designs depicted were for sale. If you don’t have the time or inclination to make your own, please consider supporting an artisan. Try searching places like ebay and etsy. Often asking a seller is all it takes to get a custom size or design.

Do you have any great tips or links to inspired designs for tribalesque bra designs? Please comment below and share what you have!

10 reasons to make a tribal bra with Jade!

Hi Beautiful Dancers and Interested people!

I will be conducting a tribal bra making workshop very, very soon but just wanted to give you the heads up so that if you are interested you can gather your supplies at your convenience.

10 reasons why you should come along

  1. Get to see cool ethnic accessories not available locally.
  2. Get to hang out with Jade!!
  3. If you ever want to perform or think you may possibly want to perform in the future – you need something cool to wear (highly recommended to all dancers in adult classes).
  4. If you never want to perform but want to look awesome in class or at a costume party
  5. Get experienced advice on bra decoration and alteration for dance and how to best compliment your figure.
  6. It’s free!
  7. Get instant bust – lol – tribal bras can give you that little bit extra profile which helps balance out awesome hip decorations.
  8. Get to buy  authentic coins, bits and pieces at prices similar or cheaper than ebay
  9. Making an original art piece to perform in is easier than you think and quite quick.
  10. Get great inspirational ideas!


  1. Get to see my new bathroom renovations….
Bellydancers at the beach woolgoolga

Jade and Ashwara show off their hand made tribal bras

What you need to bring–

A Bra  – in a size that fits you! If you don’t bring one you can’t do it! Try on any that could be suitable – I have managed to make bras from a 10a to a 12 c fit me for the purposes of dance. Make sure they don’t gape as that’s annoying to try and fix .You can go bigger if you like and pad it out- just make sure it doesn’t gape. Most important thing is that it has shape –it needs to be breast shaped when it’s not on so that when you decorate it, it doesn’t collapse under the weight or sag (not attractive!). Op Shops are awesome for this purchase – cheap and if you want to do the complete alteration then you will chop off the elastic at the back anyway so it can be a bit worn and no one will ever know. By all means, get a brand newie if you would prefer. Many dancers like push –up bras which are fine too. Oh, I don’t recommend skimpy bras. You don’t want to fall out of it while dancing and you don’t want to feel embarrassed that you are showing more than you intended. You want to feel secure and confident.

All those that think they may want to perform with me in this costume need to keep the following in mind – you will have to buy some silver coloured REAL coins probably at least $5 dollars worth – we need to have something in common with each bra. I will have some for sale on the day .

Silver is the theme, bring accessories in silver or add whatever other colours you want. Keep in mind what skirts you have and will want to wear with it and what belts you have to co-ordinate. A predominantly silver and black bra would make good sense in that it will go with everything, but colour is so nice I always use it! You will need a small amount of background fabric to cover the bras if you do not like the existing colour or don’t want to cover the entire cup with decorations. For busty ladies, consider a nice bit of embroidered or interesting fabric with a row of coins and a few chains. For smaller ladies – think fringing, and lots of accessories. You need not panic too much or spend much money; you will be surprised in what you may already have at home. I have used broken bits off bags, odd earrings and curtain tie backs for example (see picture). If it’s pretty put it aside in a basket and bring it along, people can swap bits and bobs too on the day. Think necklaces you don’t wear much – ask friends too – so many people have a stash of lost earrings and broken bits of jewelery they have been meaning to fix.

Needles and thread, scissors

Some money for all the nice things for sale –

What I will have for sale on the day –

  • I have purchased a great black bra in a 12 E from the op shop perfect for alteration–as I know these aren’t easily found in this size second hand, so first in that wants it gets it $3 only. (Clearly I won’t ever have a use for it!!).
  • Real tribal coins ready to be sewn on
  • Cowry shells also ready for sewing
  • Decorative chain – really hard to get – I have been trying for years!
  • Embroidered pillow slips (good for fabric cover)- cream base colour
  • Fringing in pale olive, aqua and maroon.
  • A few random kuchi accessories
  • Piece of mirrored  decorative strip in orange – very nice 1m only
  • Gorgeous silk veils
  • Harem pants in chiffon
  • Coin belts – various colours and styles – some I brought back from Egypt
  • Accent scarves
  • Rings
  • Earrings
  • Silver tribal bits
  • And other cool stuff

You are not expected to buy anything unless you are a regular dancer in which case you will need $5 or a bit more for coins depending on how busty you are and how many you want in your design. I am just raiding my private stash of goodies to give you access to items you can’t buy locally. So you if you have needles and thread and interesting bits of stuff from home– you could make something awesome for less than $10 (that’s how much the bra in the pic cost me to make)

Belly dancer with flowers, soft tribal look

Jade in blue

Love Jade

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